Romania will invest 2.5 billion euros to overhaul its irrigation infrastructure, Agriculture Minister Adrian Oros has said.
Another 2.1 billion will be used to alleviate soil erosion, and 1.1 billion euros is earmarked for drainage infrastructure, the minister told B1 TV on Wednesday.
It was the first time the Liberal minority government has presented a concrete project that will be funded by the European Union’s 750 billion Recovery Fund. Romania expects to be able to tap into 33 billion euros of that money.
Oros said that Romania had already requested the funds from the EU.
Two-thirds of the funds will come as grants and will be financed by the European Commission from new taxes and contributions levied to member states or large companies.
Romania’s agricultural sector had underperformed for years due to poor infrastructure, land ownership, poor irrigation and a lack of large-scale investment.
Oros said that funds from the revamped long-term EU budget that runs from 2021-2027 will be used for direct payments and subsidies for farmers, minister Oros explained.
The recovery package is to help repair the immediate damage brought by the coronavirus pandemic and kick-start the recovery.
“We are embarking on water management strategy, which is complex and we are working on different plans and programs and we’ll soon have a well-defined program, which has measures and is budgeted for.”